TravelingMom is always on the lookout for the latest and greatest in travel. We recently learned about Bonwi, a new travel booking site that promises up to five times the rewards you can get from other sites. Does Bonwi live up to the hype? Travel Hack TravelingMom Dia Adams checked out the site and has a review.
The Mayflower Hotel: Living History
Do you have that historic hotel you’ve wanted to visit forever but has always seemed out of reach? For me, that hotel was The Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC. The Mayflower, built in 1925, has witnessed Washington’s history for the past 90 years. From Inaugural balls to more sordid affairs, every corner of the Mayflower has a story to tell.
The Mayflower is steeped in luxury as much as history- and has rates to match. That is, it does during the week while official Washington goes about its business. Once the lobbyists clear out, rates at The Mayflower drop within reach of mere mortals. I took advantage of The Mayflower’s weekend discounts to enjoy a stay that didn’t break the bank.
Join our NEW Facebook Community: Making Travel Easier. We promise to always tell you what we would tell our best friend -- what works for kids, what doesn’t and what you need to know before you go to have the Best. Family. Vacation. Ever. Our group of travel experts are ready to answer your travel questions!
Sometimes when you’ve built up a hotel in your head it can’t possibly be a great as you want it to be. My stay at The Mayflower more than met expectations. It helped that I surrendered to the history with a biography of John F. Kennedy in hand. He had an apartment at The Mayflower during his Congressional days (and it’s rumored one of his many girlfriends was a regular there as well). Curled up with Jack, it was so easy to lose myself in time.
Booking with Bonwi and Getting 26 Percent Back
Making the reasonable weekend rate even more enticing is a new booking site: Bonwi. Bonwi is tailored to make travel shopping both easy and rewarding. The site promises up to five times the rewards you can get from other sites. As Travel Hack TravelingMom, I’m all about rewards. But I also take claims with a healthy dose of skepticism. Bonwi asked TravelingMom to test the site and give an honest review.
Imagine my surprise when Bonwi not only met but exceeded its promises!
The weekend I visited The Mayflower, Bonwi’s rates matched both Travelocity and Expedia. Both offer a rewards program averaging 2 percent that can only be used towards future hotel bookings on the same site. Marriott.com had a $10/night lower rate and offered Marriott Rewards points. But you would need to be loyal to Marriott over many stays to earn enough points to use them.
Bonwi not only offered a competitive rate, the site offered a whopping 12,553 points back on a $479 two night booking: a 26% rewards earning rate! Even better, the points are super easy to use. The points posted within a day of checkout and are usable towards airfare, hotel, or even gift cards at the rate of 1 penny a point.
Savoring Our Stay
A highlight of using Bonwi was knowing that I had rewards waiting for me when I got home. That gave me flexibility to splurge where I might not have otherwise.
Among the long list of Mayflower Alumni is J. Edgar Hoover ,who dined in the hotel’s restaurant daily for decades. Edgar’s restaurant in the lobby pays homage to Mr. Hoover while presenting a menu that is firmly in the 21st Century. I met some friends for lunch in the storied setting. We loved our Tuscan Flatbread bursting with dried figs, crispy prosciutto, caramelized onion and Gorgonzola for lunch. And I loved the cold leftovers even more at dinner back in my room.
TravelingMom Tip: One of our favorite things to do when taking a vacation is to hire a photographer for family photos. This is a special gift and souvenir that we cherish. We use Flytographer to book a local photographer located in the area that we're traveling to. Use this link and you will get $25 off your photo session.
Reaping Booking Site Rewards
Now I’m back home with 14,053 Bonwi Rewards burning a hole in my pocket–the points from my stay plus 1,500 bonus points customers get for signing up. The easiest way to cash out is with a $100 gift card to Amazon, Target, or any number of retailers or restaurant chains.
I plan on using mine on my next hotel booking. Disney World is an especially good value using Bonwi as it’s really hard to find ways to save on Disney Resorts. My points cover a night at Pop Century entirely (April 30) or I can use them for $140.53 towards a higher level resort and pay the difference. The room rate is exactly the same as on Disney’s own site.
I’ll still get all of the benefits of being a Disney Resort guest including Magic Bands, Early Magic Hours, and early access to FastPasses. I just won’t have to pay for it!
Does Bonwi sound like a site that could work for you? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.